2012 Connecticut General Statutes
Title 46a - Human Rights
Chapter 814c - Human Rights and Opportunities
Section 46a-64 - (Formerly Sec. 53-35). Discriminatory public accommodations practices prohibited. Penalty.


CT Gen Stat § 46a-64 (2012) What's This?

(a) It shall be a discriminatory practice in violation of this section: (1) To deny any person within the jurisdiction of this state full and equal accommodations in any place of public accommodation, resort or amusement because of race, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, gender identity or expression, marital status, age, lawful source of income, intellectual disability, mental disability or physical disability, including, but not limited to, blindness or deafness of the applicant, subject only to the conditions and limitations established by law and applicable alike to all persons; (2) to discriminate, segregate or separate on account of race, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, gender identity or expression, marital status, age, lawful source of income, intellectual disability, mental disability, learning disability or physical disability, including, but not limited to, blindness or deafness; (3) for a place of public accommodation, resort or amusement to restrict or limit the right of a mother to breast-feed her child; (4) for a place of public accommodation, resort or amusement to fail or refuse to post a notice, in a conspicuous place, that any blind, deaf or mobility impaired person, accompanied by his guide dog wearing a harness or an orange-colored leash and collar, may enter such premises or facilities; or (5) to deny any blind, deaf or mobility impaired person or any person training a dog as a guide dog for a blind person or a dog to assist a deaf or mobility impaired person, accompanied by his guide dog or assistance dog, full and equal access to any place of public accommodation, resort or amusement. Any blind, deaf or mobility impaired person or any person training a dog as a guide dog for a blind person or a dog to assist a deaf or mobility impaired person may keep his guide dog or assistance dog with him at all times in such place of public accommodation, resort or amusement at no extra charge, provided the dog wears a harness or an orange-colored leash and collar and is in the direct custody of such person. The blind, deaf or mobility impaired person or person training a dog as a guide dog for a blind person or a dog to assist a deaf or mobility impaired person shall be liable for any damage done to the premises or facilities by his dog. For purposes of this subdivision, “guide dog” or “assistance dog” includes a dog being trained as a guide dog or assistance dog and “person training a dog as a guide dog for a blind person or a dog to assist a deaf or mobility impaired person” means a person who is employed by and authorized to engage in designated training activities by a guide dog organization or assistance dog organization that complies with the criteria for membership in a professional association of guide dog or assistance dog schools and who carries photographic identification indicating such employment and authorization.

(b) (1) The provisions of this section with respect to the prohibition of sex discrimination shall not apply to (A) the rental of sleeping accommodations provided by associations and organizations which rent all such sleeping accommodations on a temporary or permanent basis for the exclusive use of persons of the same sex or (B) separate bathrooms or locker rooms based on sex. (2) The provisions of this section with respect to the prohibition of discrimination on the basis of age shall not apply to minors or to special discount or other public or private programs to assist persons sixty years of age and older. (3) The provisions of this section with respect to the prohibition of discrimination on the basis of physical disability shall not require any person to modify his property in any way or provide a higher degree of care for a physically disabled person, including, but not limited to blind or deaf persons, than for a person not physically disabled. (4) The provisions of this section with respect to the prohibition of discrimination on the basis of creed shall not apply to the practice of granting preference in admission of residents into a nursing home as defined in section 19a-490, if (A) the nursing home is owned, operated by or affiliated with a religious organization, exempt from taxation for federal income tax purposes and (B) the class of persons granted preference in admission is consistent with the religious mission of the nursing home. (5) The provisions of this section with respect to the prohibition of discrimination on the basis of lawful source of income shall not prohibit the denial of full and equal accommodations solely on the basis of insufficient income.

(c) Any person who violates any provision of this section shall be guilty of a class D misdemeanor.

(1949 Rev., S. 8375; 1949, 1953, S. 3267d; 1959, P.A. 113; 1961, P.A. 472; 1963, P.A. 594; February, 1965, P.A. 141; 1967, P.A. 177, S. 1; 1972, P.A. 186, S. 15; P.A. 73-119; 73-279, S. 6; P.A. 74-205; P.A. 75-323; P.A. 76-49, S. 3; P.A. 77-604, S. 37, 84; P.A. 78-148, S. 12; P.A. 79-186; P.A. 80-422, S. 12; 80-483, S. 135, 186; P.A. 85-289, S. 7; 85-512, S. 5; P.A. 88-114; 88-288; P.A. 89-21, S. 2; 89-288, S. 2; P.A. 90-230, S. 63, 101; 90-246, S. 3; 90-330, S. 4, 11; P.A. 94-238, S. 4, 6; P.A. 97-141, S. 2; 97-210, S. 1; P.A. 07-217, S. 167; P.A. 11-55, S. 25; 11-129, S. 20; P.A. 12-80, S. 94.)

History: 1959 act included as place of public accommodation housing which is one of five or more accommodations located on a single parcel or contiguous parcels of land and owned and controlled by any person; 1961 act included building lots as housing accommodations, reduced the number of accommodations to be subject to section from five to three and made person who owned or controlled the accommodations within one year prior to a violation liable and provided ownership or control by the same interests would be deemed to be by one person; 1963 act deleted the aforesaid provisions re accommodations on a single parcel of land making the statute applicable to a single accommodation or lot and added Subdivs. (1) and (2); 1965 act added prohibition against discrimination by reason of national origin or ancestry; 1967 act added commercial property and buildings; 1972 act included mobile home parks as place of public accommodation, resort or amusement in Subsec. (a); P.A. 73-119 specified discrimination based on sex as violation of section and specified inapplicability of section re sex discrimination to rental of sleeping accommodations by associations or organizations when rent accommodations for exclusive use of persons of same sex; P.A. 73-279 prohibited discrimination because of physical disability including blindness, inserted new Subsecs. (b) and (c) qualifying said prohibition, designated penalty provisions as Subsec. (d) and relettered former Subsec. (b) as (e); P.A. 74-205 prohibited discrimination based on marital status and added provision rendering that prohibition inapplicable to cases where housing accommodation denied to man and woman who are unrelated and not married to each other; P.A. 75-323 prohibited discrimination on basis of age and added provision limiting that prohibition with respect to minors, housing for elderly and housing exclusively for persons within specified age groups; P.A. 76-49 prohibited discrimination based on deafness, applied provisions of Subsecs. (b) and (c) to deaf persons and defined “deaf person” in Subsec. (b); P.A. 77-604 made technical correction in Subsec. (a); P.A. 78-148 prohibited discrimination based on mental retardation in Subsec. (a); P.A. 79-186 required posting of notice re guide dogs in Subsec. (c); P.A. 80-422 rephrased and rearranged provisions, deleted provisions defining “place of public accommodation, resort or amusement” and “deaf person”, deleted former Subsec. (e) which specified that section does not apply to proceedings pending before civil rights commission or any court on October 1, 1963, and extended provision limiting prohibition on age discrimination to include discount and other programs for persons 60 and older; P.A. 80-483 added feminine personal pronouns in Subsec. (c); Sec. 53-35 transferred to Sec. 46a-64 in 1981; P.A. 85-289 made Subsec. (a) applicable to mobility impaired persons; P.A. 85-512 amended section to provide for exemption from age discrimination prohibition for certain mobile manufactured home parks; P.A. 88-114 added Subsec. (b)(6) exempting practice of granting preference in admission of residents into a nursing home from provisions of section re discrimination on basis of creed if it is owned, operated by or affiliated with a religious organization, exempt from taxation and the class of persons granted preference in admission is consistent with religious mission of nursing home; P.A. 88-288 added reference to mental disability in Subsec. (a); P.A. 89-21 added option that guide dog wear an orange-colored leash and collar; P.A. 89-288 amended Subsec. (a) to prohibit discrimination in places of public accommodation based on lawful source of income and added new Subsec. (b)(7) rendering the prohibition inapplicable to cases where the denial of full and equal accommodations is solely based on insufficient income; P.A. 90-230 made a technical change in Subsec. (a); P.A. 90-246 amended Subsec. (b) by deleting references to housing accommodations or mobile manufactured home parks; P.A. 90-330 amended Subsec. (a) by adding reference to persons with “learning disability”; P.A. 94-238 amended Subsec. (b) by exempting separate bathrooms or locker rooms based on sex, effective July 1, 1994; P.A. 97-141 amended Subsec. (a) to make provisions applicable with respect to any person training a dog as a guide dog for a blind person or a dog to assist a deaf or mobility impaired person, and to add definitions of “assistance dog”, “guide dog” and “person training a dog as a guide dog for a blind person or a dog to assist a deaf or mobility impaired person”; P.A. 97-210 added new Subsec. (a)(3) re breast-feeding and renumbering the remaining Subdivs.; P.A. 07-217 made technical changes in Subsec. (c), effective July 12, 2007; P.A. 11-55 amended Subsec. (a)(1) and (2) to prohibit discrimination on basis of gender identity or expression; pursuant to P.A. 11-129, “mental retardation” was changed editorially by the Revisors to “intellectual disability” in Subsec. (a); P.A. 12-80 amended Subsec. (c) to replace penalty of a fine of not less than $25 or more than $100 or imprisonment of not more than 30 days or both with a class D misdemeanor.

See Sec. 1-1f for definitions of “blind” and “physically disabled”.

See Sec. 46a-42 re definition of “mobility impaired person”.

See Sec. 46b-35a re denial of certain accommodations on religious grounds.

Barbershop not a place of public accommodation. 79 C. 541. Wife could be enjoined from renting her interest in apartment owned jointly with her husband, where it was proven she refused rental because of plaintiff’s race, but no proof was given that husband authorized discrimination. 157 C. 20. Cited. 160 C. 226. Cited. 165 C. 516.

Tavern operating under a permit comes within the statute. 7 CS 443. Cited. 20 CS 171. Hospital deemed public accommodation re constitutional discrimination. 30 CS 1. Cited. 35 CS 549; Id., 565.

Defendant owner of rental premises violated section by discriminating against complainant, a prospective tenant, in rental of apartment because of her Puerto Rican ancestry. 6 Conn. Cir. Ct. 179.

Subsec. (a):

Cited. 201 C. 350.

Subsec. (d):

Cited. 204 C. 287.

Annotations to present section:

Complainant at outset must establish a prima facie case of discrimination and as part of initial burden must introduce evidence that he was ready to accept the legitimate objective requirements of tenancy. 200 C. 261. Cited. 201 C. 350. Cited. 232 C. 645.

Fair Housing Act, Sec. 46a-63 et seq. cited. 45 CA 1.

Subsec. (a):

Subdiv. (1): Denial of opportunity to serve as scoutmaster is not a deprivation of an “accommodation”. 204 C. 287. Subdiv. (1) cited. 220 C. 192. Subdiv. (2) cited. Id.

Subdiv. (1) cited. 18 CA 126. Subdiv. (2) cited. Id. Although no private organization is duty-bound to offer its services and facilities to all comers, once such an organization has determined to eschew selectivity, under statute it may not discriminate among the general public. Accordingly, coverage under this subsec. depends, in each case, upon extent to which a particular establishment has maintained a private relationship with its own constituency or a general relationship with the public at large. 99 CA 839. Connecticut’s courts, in construing state antidiscrimination statutes that have similar federal counterparts, have looked to federal case law for guidance, even though federal and state statutes may differ somewhat. Under certain circumstances, federal law defines the beginning and not the end of state’s approach to the subject. Consequently, on occasion, state courts have interpreted statutes even more broadly than their counterparts, to provide even greater protections to state citizens, especially in the area of civil rights. Id.

Subsec. (c):

Cited. 204 C. 287.

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